Minnesota’s governor activated the National Guard on Thursday to help restore order following two days of violent protests in Minneapolis over the death of a black man seen in graphic video gasping for breath as a white officer knelt on his neck.Governor Tim Walz ordered Guard troops to assist police as local, state and federal law enforcement officials sought to ease racial tensions sparked by Monday night’s fatal arrest of George Floyd, 46.Four city police officers involved in the incident, including the one shown pressing his knee into Floyd’s neck as he lay on the ground, were fired from their jobs the next day. Topics : At a morning news briefing, Police Chief Medaria Arradondo apologized to Floyd’s family, conceding his department had contributed to a “deficit of hope” in Minnesota’s largest city even before Floyd’s deadly encounter with police.”I am absolutely sorry for the pain, devastation and the trauma that Mr. Floyd’s death has left on his family, his loved ones and our community,” he said.Hours later, officials overseeing investigations from the US Justice Department, FBI, Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and local prosecutors appealed for calm at a joint news conference, as they gathered evidence.”Give us the time to do this right, and we will bring you justice, I promise you,” Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman told reporters. He acknowledged the policeman’s conduct depicted in the video was “horrible,” but said, “My job is to prove that he has violated a criminal statute.” Freeman said his office had also reached out to veteran civil rights activist Jesse Jackson for help in conveying the message that law enforcement takes the case seriously.Minnesota’s US attorney, Erica McDonald, pledged a “robust and meticulous investigation into the circumstances surrounding” Floyd’s arrest and death.The investigation, which Attorney General William Barr had designated a “top priority,” will focus on whether the arresting officers used the “color of law” to deprive Floyd of his civil rights, a federal crime, she said.The announcement capped two days of unrest in which riot police firing tear gas and rubber bullets clashed with rock-throwing protesters who filled the streets in an outpouring of rage over Floyd’s death.Floyd, a Houston native known affectionately to friends as “Big Floyd” and who had worked as a nightclub security staffer, was reportedly suspected of trying to pass counterfeit money when police took him into custody.’I can’t breathe’An onlooker’s video of the arrest showed Floyd lying face down on the street, gasping for air and repeatedly groaning for help as he pleaded, “Please, I can’t breathe.” The officer pinned Floyd’s neck to the ground for about eight minutes, until he grew still. He was pronounced dead at a hospital a short time later.A second night of disturbances on Wednesday, punctuated by looting, vandalism and arson, began hours after Mayor Jacob Frey urged local prosecutors to file criminal charges in the case.Most protesters had been peaceful, while a core group engaged in unruly behavior, the police chief said.The Floyd case was reminiscent of the 2014 killing of Eric Garner, an unarmed black man in New York City who died after being put in a banned police chokehold.Garner’s dying words, “I can’t breathe,” became a rallying cry for the Black Lives Matter movement calling attention to a wave of killings of African-Americans by police using unjustified lethal force.United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet urged US authorities on Thursday to deal with “entrenched and pervasive racial discrimination” in America’s criminal justice system.The city named the four officers involved in the encounter as Derek Chauvin, Thomas Lane, Tou Thao and J Alexander Kueng. Local news media have identified Chauvin as the officer seen kneeling on Floyd’s neck.Chauvin’s attorney, Tom Kelly, declined comment in an email to Reuters.Police department records posted online show 18 internal affairs complaints filed against Chauvin, 16 of which were closed without discipline.
BATTING sensation Bhaskar Yadram and wicketkeeper batsman Joshua Persaud have been included in the West Indies Under-19 squad for the tour to South Africa next month.While the entire squad is yet to be made public, secretary of the Guyana Cricket Board, Anand Sanasie, confirmed on Wednesday that the two Guyanese will feature in the squad.Both players were a part of the West Indies Under-19 training camp held last December. Subsequently Yadram represented the West Indies Under-19 team in this year Regional Super50 tournament before making his first-class debut against the Leeward Islands Hurricanes in the just concluded West Indies Cricket Board’s Professional Cricket League (PCL).Persaud, who plays for the Guyana National Industrial Corporation (GNIC) was part of the West Indies Under-17 team that tour the United Kingdom in 2015.The tour is part of the region’s preparation for their title defence of the International Cricket Council’s Under-19 World Cup.The Caribbean side will play five 50-over games against the South Africa Under-19s and two warm-up matches against local opposition, in a tour set to run from June 30 to July 27. The Caribbean side will also journey to Zimbabwe for further ODI engagements.The World Cup is scheduled for New Zealand, January 12 – February 4, 2018.
OSAGE — An Osage man has pleaded not guilty to eight charges of sexual abuse. 22-year-old Marcus McNealy was charged in March with four counts of second-degree sexual abuse for allegedly abusing a child between May 2011 and November 2015. McNealy was charged with an additional four counts of third-degree sexual abuse for committing a sexual act against the will of the same victim between November 2015 and November 2016. McNealy’s arraignment hearing was scheduled for today, but online court records show that he filed a written plea of not guilty to the charges late last week in Mitchell County District Court. His trial is scheduled to start on July 15th. If convicted of all the charges, he’d face a prison term of 140 years.